Twenty Years Later, she comes back to Hopewell UMC
On a beautiful afternoon in early September, I was sitting on the back porch of the parsonage and working, when suddenly I saw a group of people walking in the driveway and making their way to the back of the Church. There was a young man and two young ladies all in their mid-twenties, a middle-aged mother and another young girl who was probably around 10 years old.
At first, I found it very unusual and thought they were lost. As they reached where I was sitting, I stood up and asked them if I could be of any help. One of the young ladies, who lives in Princeton, mentioned to me that they both went to the kindergarten in our church twenty years ago and they wanted to visit where they met as children. It was news to me. I wasn’t aware that our church used to host a kindergarten. I offered them to go inside the church building, but they declined. I joined them as they were reminiscing about the past and standing around the playground and chatting.
At one point, the young lady looked around and said” I remembered the garage, but I don’t remember the shade.” She went on to say “there used to be a hill between the parsonage and the children’s playground.
She recalled sliding down it during snow days. I could see in her eyes that she was nostalgic and fond of her kindergarten days. This is perhaps why she decided to come back and visit.
Child Psychologists argue that our childhood has an effect on our adulthood, our early experiences shape our belief about ourselves, others and the world. The values we learn in our childhood carry a weight as we grow older.
In the Bible, Children have a special place in Jesus’ sermons. Once his disciples were stopping them from coming to him, he rebuked his disciples and said “let the children come to me, the Kingdom of God is like having faith as children (Mark 10:13-16.)
My hope and prayers are that in coming weeks and months we will adventure in building a new ministry towards children. So far, I have initiated talks with some parents, and I intend to involve all who have children to have a say in it. A board will be constituted, and planning will follow. The aim is to come up with a comprehensive ministry description and a portfolio of a part time children’s ministry director and ways to fund the position.
But until everything is in place, let us continue to resource and equip our children with values and Christian upbringing that will sustain them in their adulthood. I give a shout out to all the volunteers who have been doing their best to accommodate our children and their parents. I am so thankful and indebted to you. And all of us in the church are.
We appreciate your passion and dedication.
In His Name,